L.A. council members retreat on financial aid request from hotel developer

Local news
Los Angeles City Atty. Mike Feuer said he opposes any effort to give a tax break to the developer of a hotel planned in Koreatown.(Mike Balsamo/AP)

Los Angeles City Atty. Mike Feuer said he opposes any effort to give a tax break to the developer of a hotel planned in Koreatown.(Mike Balsamo/AP)

Nine years ago, a judge found that a financially struggling hotel in Koreatown had failed to pay its share of local taxes, ruling that the company owed the city of Los Angeles nearly $3.5 million.

City officials, reeling from their own financial crisis, were so eager to collect that they sent sheriff’s deputies into the Wilshire Boulevard hotel to retrieve a portion of the money. The City Council eventually reached a legal settlement in 2012, securing $2.65 million — less than officials claimed they were owed — from the hotel and its owner, Leo Y. Lee.

Council members began dealing with Lee again earlier this year. But this time, they began looking at providing financial help for his latest venture: a new 192-room hotel planned in another part of Koreatown.

After The Times inquired about Lee’s previous legal dispute with the city, City Atty. Mike Feuer said he would oppose any financial aid for Lee’s planned hotel. Such an arrangement, while not illegal, would be “outrageous,” he said.

Read the full story at LATimes.com.

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